Thursday, July 7, 2011

Healthy Living Tips

By Natalie

1. Take cokes out of your diet. Take them out of your diet for a week and see what happens. A friend of mine said that his doctor told him, "If you have to choose between a diet Dr Pepper or a beer, you choose the beer." His liver had become fatty because of the sodas he was drinking. My doctor said he has seen a correlation with his patients and MS and diet soda.

2. Don't eat out. Whatever you currently eat out, try to cut that in half. It's almost impossible to eat healthy when you eat at restaurants.  These restaurants are sly. I ordered a portobello burger at Cheesecake Factory thinking I was being semi-healthy, and it was 1100 calories. Umm, might as well of had a bacon cheese burger.

3.  Don't buy temptation foods. It is so easy to say "no" one time at the grocery store than to say "no" over and over at your house.  I would stand in front of the pantry all day long snacking, so I try to just have healthy choices on hand. Don't get me wrong, I have chocolate and cheddar bunnies as my go to snack. I just limit the quantities.

4. Get a buddy. For the 7 years that Micah and I have been together, he rarely worked out with me. I'm so thrilled that we can work out together now. We keep each other honest. We encourage each other and play devils advocate. When I don't want to work out, he makes me. And vice versa.

5. Pack your lunch. I work in a school setting, so I really don't have the option to go out. You save money and you save calories by not eating out. Sometimes this is a very difficult habit to break. If you eat out 5 days a week, try to shave it down to 3. Just try and cut back the best you can. Pack a sandwich, or have frozen lunches at the office. Make extra when you cook dinner. After we finish eating dinner, I pack the left overs into portable lunches. Feel like you are left out of socializing? Get a group together to make lunches together. When I worked in Houston some teachers set up a lunch rotation. Each teacher would be in charge of preparing lunch 1 day a week.  You'll need to keep this group small to not feel overwhelmed.

6. Bribe yourself. Set a long term goal, and go for it. Micah's motivator was a beer festival in September in Colorado. If he lost 30 pounds he gets to go to GABF, and he made it! Long term goals, don't work for you? Make a short term goal. "When I run 3 miles I get to buy $135 shoes." "When I work out 3 times a week, I get an ice cream cone on Friday." You know what motivates you. Take a picture, write it down, and put it on the fridge to remind you!

7. Broadcast it. Get the news out there that you are making changes, losing weight, and working out. When you spread that news, people will ask you about your progress. This is a great checks and balance.  Sometimes when I run I think about how excited I'm going to be to tell FB or Twitter that I ran "this many miles" or I did it in "this amount of time." It keeps me motivated to not disappoint my friends and family.

8. Set a work out goal. I do really well when I know what I'm working for. I set up a training schedule, and I treat it like the gospel. Right now Micah is working towards Hotter N' Hell 100, this keeps him motivated to ride. He made a schedule and put it in his iPhone. I set up a weekly schedule that I stick to. For example, Mondays-long run, Tuesdays-spin class, Wednesdays-swim & strength train, Thursday-yoga, Friday-off, Saturday-long ride, Sunday-off. Write down your schedule, and schedule outings with friends around this.

Make it that simple. Convince yourself you want to change, and you will. People can change all the time. Just look at Micah, he's down 40 pounds since January.

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